The Sons of Eilaboun

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The Nakba in Eilaboun (Eilabun)

by Hisham Zreiq

He choked and his eyes were full of tears, and with a trembling voice he said “I remember it as if it has just happened”, this is the way he ended the story, the story of a nine years old boy from a small village called Eilaboun (Eilabun), in Palestine 1948, the story of my father, when he was a refugee.

It all started on October 30, 1948, when the Israeli army interred his village and massacred 14 young men, one of them was his brother, and some of the others were his cousins, and the villagers were forced to leave their country to Lebanon. This was only the beginning of what he went through, a beginning of a long nightmare. In this nightmare my father witnessed the massacre of about 50 young men, who were convinced to surrender their weapons, and the minute they did, they were murdered in cold blood in front of the people of two villages (their own village, and Eilaboun (عيلبون)). A boy of his age was shot while speaking to him about games, the blood of a woman sitting next to him splashed on his face, when the solders shot her hand, the fear he had…

My father (Salem Zreiq) told us those stories many times before, but this time it was different. This time he was very emotional; he made us live his story, he made us feel what he went through, or at least part of it, for the first time I felt that it happened to my father and indirectly it happened to me!

The Sons Of Eilaboun (أبناء عيلبون) is a documentary film about the massacre, expulsion and return of a small Palestinian village in the Galilee. In the film the Israeli historian Ilan Pappe introduce the history behind the Nakba events. And the Eilaboun (Eilabun) people tell their story.

The Film is in production, and a short version (about 24 minutes) is produced, and a full length version will follow soon.